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Full text of "Flora Indica Vol-I"

120                                     FLOKA  INDICA.
A dense forest clothes all the humid southern and western
parts of the island, composed of plants eminently character-
istic of Malabar. The vegetation of the upper and lofty dis-
favjts is more mixed with temperate forms, and is extremely
luxuriant, containing many, and indeed composed almost ex-
clusively, of tue species of the great Peninsular chain. Be-
sides the mountain-slopes being covered with dense forests,
there are open and undulating lofty table-lands which appear,
like those of the Nilghiri and Khasia, to be clothed with large
clumps of shrubs, swards of grass, and a rich herbaceous ve-
getation, the large trees being confined to the ravines. In
these places, Ternstraxniacea, Rhododendron arboreum. Vac-
cinia, Gaultheria, Symploci, Michelia, GougMa, and Gomphan~
dra, seem as frequent as they axe on analogous elevations of
the continental ranges.
Though the Flora of Ceylon (which probably does not con-
tain 3000 phsenogamic plants) is on the whole identical with
that of the peninsula, it presents a considerable number of
endemic species, and a few genera, especially tropical ones,
wlxich arc not found in the peninsula. Dilleniacea, Anonacea,
Garciniace<Bj Balsaminea, arc all abundant in Ceylon. Its
most remarkable deficiencies are Bcitamitwa, Oaks, Willow,
Nipa, Gnetum, Pinus, Podocarpus, Cycas, It presents also but
few Palms: amongst these the most conspicuous are Cocoa-
nut (cultivated only), Corypha umbracuKfera, Barazzus flabel~
liforniis, P/icenix farinifera, Caryotq urens^ an Arenga, Areca>
and several Calami. This is a remarkably small number,
when the Flora is contrasted with the Malayan*.
The Cingalese Flora has been investigated by a succession
of industrious botanists, but no attempt at an enumeration of
* The adaptation of tho aoil tuul climate, of the lowest uwl hottest purta of
Coylou to tlift ripening of grapca, is a most remarkable fuct connected with tlws
cultivation of tho vhi<». Mr. Kdgnr Lnynrd (\vhotw zoological K'tmarcht'S in
Coylon are JK> well known and upjnvnatod) informs) iw tbut at Julfiw, (it tho
northern cxtrtnue, the grtip« i« #ro\vu Hiurtvwrtfully. Thi» cold weather or north-
oast monsoon flHs in there t'urly in NovtMnluT, und the **jnv<.vl \\ufer" fruits
hi Ma> and iu Odtob«*r, and the <vl»ledk olusfn*1' in SaptrHihtT; «ftt»i* IVuititiij